Thematic SSTC City Clusters for South-South exchanges

April 6, 2021

During the implementation of activities under the Cities Project in 2019-2020, especially related to needs assessments, needs surveys, and capacity development workshops, demands, cities and city-related institutions expressed interest for South-South exchanges in the following sectoral and thematic areas. Against this backdrop, the Cities Project and partners jointly identified that thematic and sectoral South-South cooperation between cities and city-related institutions in the form of groups or clusters could be utilized to enable more effective development collaboration for advancing SDGs.

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COVID-19 Response & Recovery, Public Health

With the outbreak of COVID-19, the challenges, and risks in developing countries are immense, especially in cities with high population density, lack of proper health care facilities and governance mechanisms. While living in cities may offer many opportunities, the health risks are also higher, which calls for greater and timely cooperation between cities in developing countries.  The increased amount of requests for support in COVID-19 response and recovery and public health are received.  In 2021, the Cities project will continue prioritizing requests received in this area and work with specialized agencies in different regions on enhancing collaborations and developing capacities of cities and institutions in public health preparedness, emergency response and social-economic recovery.

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Sustainable Agriculture Value Chain Development

Agriculture has continued to be a key area for support, especially now with COVID-19 impacts on the agriculture supply chain and post-harvest loss. Cities project will continue focusing on this thematic area and implementing capacity development, knowledge and GP sharing, pilot and demonstration activities with partner agencies in this area. Cities project also aims to expand and explore cooperation with Latin America and The Caribbean through engaging the Inter-American Institute for Cooperation on Agriculture (IICA), WFP LAC, IFAD LAC and FAO LAC. 

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E-Commerce, Digitalization & Smart City

The digital economy interests developing countries as they can leapfrog developmental stages by harnessing the benefits brought about by digital technologies. Developing countries have made impressive progress in digitalizing many aspects of the traditional industries. Of note is the trade aided by digital platforms, also known as E-commerce. With widespread COVID-19 impacts and arising needs for a green and just recovery from the pandemic, Cities Project has commissioned 15 capacity development trainings and webinars on e-commerce in 2020. Building on results achieved in the past year, in 2021 Cities Project will continue to carry out activities and facilitate capacity development and knowledge GP sharing among cities and institutions under this theme in partnership with specialized agencies and entities.